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Business Professionals of America

BUSINESS PROFESSIONALS OF AMERICA

Business Professionals of America (BPA) is a national vocational student organization for individuals preparing for careers in business and/or office occupations. With nineteen state associations and 45,000 members in middle, secondary, and post-secondary schools throughout North America, the BPA strives to contribute to the preparation of a world-class work force by advancing leadership, citizenship, and academic and technological skills. Using a co-curricular focus, the BPA integrates local programs and services into a business classroom curriculum and focuses on real-world teaching and learning strategies. Additionally, the BPA develops professionalism in students and teachers through unique programs and services.

Historically, the need for a student organization serving individuals in vocational office programs was recognized shortly after the passage of the Vocational Education Act of 1963. The articles of incorporation for the Office Education Association, the original name of the BPA, were officially filed in 1966. The name was changed to Business Professionals of America on July 1, 1988.

Business Professionals of America offers its student, teacher, and alumni members a variety of programs and services. The National Leadership Conference annually hosts national officer elections and competitive events that allow students to demonstrate workplace skills obtained through the business classroom curriculum and Industry Certification and Behavioral Skills Assessment ("Workplace Skills Assessment Program," 1998). Awards programs also recognize successes of members and chapters.

Various written materials and the official quarterly journal, Communique, provide members with services, updates, and promotional opportunities. Additionally, scholarship programs are sought at universities to encourage participation in business education at the post-secondary level. More information is available from Business Professionals of America, 5454 Cleveland Ave., Columbus, Ohio 43231-4021, (800) 334-2007, or http://www.bpa.org/.

see also DECA; Future Business Leaders of America; SkillsUSA

bibliography

Business Professionals of America (2004). "History of Business Professionals of America." Retrieved September 26, 2005, from http://www.bpa.org/history.htm.

Jewel Evans Hairston

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